From the Androscoggin County area, aspiring, motivated writers gathered for the closing Academic Advocate banquet at Sacred Heart Church. Middle school and high school students who contributed at least three articles to the Advocate throughout the year were invited to attend and to receive their Academic Advocate staff fleece blanket. No student went unrecognized, for the year’s issues would not have been the same without each of the student articles that were written.

So what did we do? Particular students were given gifts according to the total number of articles that they wrote during the year (starting at 6 articles, then the next at 12, and the next at 16 or more). There are several students who were recognized for their contributions of writing to the Advocate that go far beyond the necessary. The Johnny M. Robinson Award was given to Kristen Pelletier of Lewiston High School, Alisa Blundon of Monmouth Academy, and Khristen Whiting and Matt Daigle of Edward Little High School. An award that was established in 2001 in memory of former Advocate Editor Betty Libby was surprisingly given to me! It was an honor may I say. I hope that I can positively influence future writers of the Advocate.

It was clear that every student who attended the banquet had a pure love for writing. They were students who had something to say, and it is their way of expressing it. I, as an individual, write for the Advocate, not for the incentives that are given at the end of the year (although they are a plus!), but for fun and for the public to know of the accomplishments and opinions of people at my school. I can do nothing but encourage anyone who loves to write to join the Academic Advocate staff; it’s a great way to be heard. Never doubt your abilities as a writer. If there is something on your mind, write it down and make something of it. In our world, and town, opinions matter most, and every single one counts, so never be afraid to contribute them. Running out of ideas??

Don’t think that there is nothing to write about, because that is far from the truth! Look around your school or community, mainly at the areas that interest you most, whether it be sports or the arts, and write about it. A thought not written down, becomes a thought forgotten, but a thought written down can change your future!

If you are interested in joining your school’s Advocate staff, find out who your school’s advisor is, and start writing! All articles are welcome! So, speak out and write, and you will not go unrecognized!

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